background image
34
DigiCULT
W
HEN CURRENT STANDARDS ARE
NO LONGER SUFFICIENT
W
e anticipated that some bodies like ADL
(through SCORM) and OKI are colla-
borating with leading universities and specification
and standards organisations to support innovative
learning technology in specific application sectors
such as military training and higher education.The
results of this collaboration are application profiles for
some specific sectors like the adoption of SCORM
by the US Department of Defense, which specifies
how the components of an educational software
environment should communicate with each other.
Unfortunately, an application profile for the
cultural heritage sector to take into account the
specific content publishing needs and educational
strategies that might be better used in sector-related
scenarios is still missing. In order to address this
deficiency, Giunti Interactive Labs proposes a frame-
work of sector-related activities called CHAPTER
(Cultural Heritage Application Profile for Techno-
logies in Education Reusability), whose aims are
to extend or modify the current e-learning speci-
fications through the results of pioneering R&D
projects, co-funded by the European Commission
(e.g. IMAGEN,
17
SCULPTEUR, ARCO,
18
I-
MASS,
19
Mobilearn
20
), and to conceive valuable
results able to follow the process from early R&D
results to final adoption by the standardisation bodies.
The full process is illustrated in Figure 4.
The main results of those R&D projects dealing
with the cultural heritage sector (some of which
are depicted in Figure 4) may be submitted to the
specification bodies, mainly IMS, while the origin-
ating R&D projects continue to work on the most
interesting results in order to improve their
specifications. Once the specifications have reached
a sufficient state of maturity, and have become of
interest, a sector profiling body (like ADL) for cult-
ural heritage e-learning could provide the consensus
building and community building strength needed
to pass specifications through wider uptake to the
standardisation bodies such as the IEEE, International
Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the World
Wide Web Consortium (W3C).
21
The continuous
process of feeding information back to the standards
organisation will occur again and again before the
documents move being from an initial R&D
specification to an accredited standard.
To give an example, IMS, through the Shareable
State Persistence Project Team (SSP),
22
is working on
a new specification to extend the ADL SCORM in
order to support the storage, retrieval and sharing of
the state of a piece of learning content.
The information about the state is usually a col-
lection of data about variables that are important for
determining the learning status (for example the
learners' mastery states). SCORM currently provides
a rule-based `learning strategy' that enables Shareable
Content Objects (SCOs, the lowest level of granul-
arity of learning resources that can be tracked by a
VLE) to set the state of global records, called
`objectives'.
These records can store the learner's degree of
mastery in the form of a score or a passed/failed
state, or they may store the progress of the learner in
terms of completion. A `hook' was included in the
records, which allows them to reference externally
defined competencies.
As the learner is sequenced through the Shareable
Content Objects, the learning system builds up a
representation of the learner's mastery and progress.
The objective records may be viewed as a simple
IMAGEN
I-MASS
ARCO
Mobilearn
SCULPTEUR ...
Specification
Bodies
R&D
Projects
Sector
Profiling
Bodies
Standardisation
Bodies
C
.H.A.P
.T
.E.R.
Cultural Her
itage
Application Pr
ofile for
T
echnolo
g
ies in Education Reusability
Figure 4: CHAPTER framework
17
IMAGEN project,
http://www.imagenweb.org/
18
ARCO project,
http://www.arco-web.org
19
I-MASS project,
http://www.i-massweb.org
20
Mobilearn project,
http://www.mobilearn.org
21
World Wide Web
Consortium,W3C,
http://www.w3.org/
22
Shareable State Persistence,
http://www.imsglobal.org/
workinprogress.cfm
Digicult_THI4_backup_13_10_03 24.10.2003 11:54 Uhr Seite 34